We’re enjoying an ever-changing display of flowers on our EVAs:
Food System Update
We didn’t hike to the local supply depot (aka corner shop) on Wednesday, so we went this morning instead. I got the fizzy water I wanted, and we picked up a few other bits and pieces for the weekend. We are expecting another delivery from Earth on Sol 36. Ryan’s parents are expecting theirs on Sol 35, so we don’t have to worry about them this week.
…and supporting a local business which is providing a valuable service. And so you go in for fizzy water and come home with garlic bread and tinned tuna and long life chocolate brioche with far too much plastic wrapping. And biscuits.— Unconventional Emma (@emmathegardener) April 24, 2020
On Sol 30 we got out the Breville (grill) to make toasted sandwiches for the first time in years. I made oat bread in the breadmachine for the occasion, as it makes really good toast. We tried tuna and grated cheese for the filling. The toasties toasted up nicely, but the filling was a little on the bland side. On Sol 31 we tried turning it into tuna mayo and using that with grated cheese, but it wasn’t much of an improvement. Some more experimentation is required!
For our evening meal on Sol 30 we had a pork stir-fry in the freezer, and I added asparagus and sea beet leaves from the Green-Hab and served it with noodles.
On Sol 31 I got around to making Jack Monroe’s stewed steak ragu, and it turned out really nicely! I collected the last of my homegrown potatoes from the Maker-Hab. Now that the weather has turned warmed they are madly sprouting, so I have washed them all and popped them in the fridge to use up ASAP. So I served the ragu with mashed potato, and made extra to save to make potato scones over the weekend.
On Sol 32 we had boiled eggs and the last of the oat bread as toast fingers for lunch. Our evening meal was spaghetti with smoked meat and pesto. We added some zhoug, which made it a bit fiery! So we broke open some of the long life custard supplies to cool things down a bit!
Today is a diet day, so Isonaut Ryan will have noodles for lunch and I will have my morning porridge very late! For dinner I have marinaded some strips of chicken breast in yoghurt, mustard and herbs, and I’ll grill those and serve them with peas.
Chief Engineer Ryan has added a new washing line to the Green-Hab, which makes it much easier to dry laundry!
I’m just seeing signs of germination under the grow lights – climbing beans, sweetcorn and PSB are just starting to show their heads.
The beansprouts are pretty much ready, the coriander microgreens are germinating and the sweetcorn and wheat sprouts are doing well. The initial batch of peas didn’t sprout (far too old!) so I have started again with some fresher ones, and they are just starting to sprout now.
NASA has tweeted a string of short videos on the work of their space plant scientists.
Jacob Torres on why NASA wants to grow peppers on the ISS:
Rachel Tucker on growing crops in simulated Martian soil (regolith):
Some of our scientists are researching growing crops in Martian regolith simulants, or substances that mimic the surface of Mars. Rachel Tucker explains how this research could help us grow plants on the Red Planet. 🔽— NASA’s Kennedy Space Center (@NASAKennedy) April 20, 2020
More about growing plants in space: https://t.co/vYFVpzZ7mj pic.twitter.com/nAjogkjWeq
Aaron Curry talks about food safety in space:
Aaron Curry talks about the importance of food safety in crop production, which is especially important on board @Space_Station. 🔽— NASA’s Kennedy Space Center (@NASAKennedy) April 21, 2020
More about growing plants in space: https://t.co/vYFVpzZ7mj pic.twitter.com/3WRTX28tRg
Jess Bunchek on ground simulations of space plant experiments:
(be warned, there’s a lot of background noise on this one!)
Jess Bunchek, a plant scientist, talks about how her team can simulate the environment on the @Space_Station from the ground to see how plants may grow when exposed to the conditions onboard the orbiting lab.— NASA's Kennedy Space Center (@NASAKennedy) April 23, 2020
More about growing plants in space: https://t.co/vYFVpAgIdR pic.twitter.com/9OX31frPMA
Entertainment and morale
We took a virtual tour of the Baikonur cosmodrome with Space Store Live and Remco Timmermans, and then watched Wall-E.